Last weekend, Fearless Comedy Productions presented their second original comedy production, Jenny Bandage vs the Unpronounceable A.K.R.O.N.Y.M. at the Black Forest Inn in Minneapolis. In it, the titular scientist/secret agent (played by Dawn Krosnowski) matches wits with her arch-nemesis Professor A.K.R.O.N.Y.M. (John Kunik) in a globe-spanning quest to save the world from ignorance and super villainy.
In a story liberally peppered with geek jokes and social commentary, Bandage is on a mission to save her sidekick and stop her foe from propagating junk science. Director Andy Wilkins and the small cast make creative use of the space, (the Black Forest is a notoriously difficult spot in which to maintain a fourth wall,) embracing the challenge with nods and winks to the audience and a Deadpool-like sense self-awareness. Working her way in and around the house, Krosnowski owns the lead role as she initiates her plucky young sidekick in the ways of science and international espionage. Kunik, channeling BRIAN BLESSED, booms into his role as a mad scientist with his own evil intern (played by Jon Gershberg) to train.
The meat of the story is in A.K.R.O.N.Y.M.’s quest to build a cool secret base and take his old enemy out once and for all, which leads him to accept a sizable sum from an evil financier. In exchange for funding, A.K.R.O.N.Y.M. agrees to pen a bogus article claiming that the scientific community is wrong about climate change. The story also finds time between the slapstick and the running gags to lambast intelligent design, homeopathy, anti-vaxxers and the broader rise of anti-intellectualism in modern society. In that respect, the production is sometimes blatantly educational, but it doesn’t beat its audience clumsily over the head with a moral. Instead, it takes an approach akin to Bill Nye‘s, (if Bill Nye were writing Police Squad,) and creates a family-friendly blend of social satire and innocent silliness.
Jenny Bandage vs the Unpronounceable A.K.R.O.N.Y.M. continues at the Black Forest Inn, 1 East 26th Street, Minneapolis, on June 6, 7, 8, 12 and 13 at 8:00 pm. $12-15 (www.fearlesscomedyproductions.com)